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Picanol Group Met FY 2003 Expectations

Belgium-based Picanol Group which comprises Picanol NV, Proferro NV, Steel Heddle Inc., PST Ltd. and GTP Greenville, plus other smaller companies announced its consolidated and audited results for the 2003 fiscal year (FY 2003) were in line with company expectations. The group posted a consolidated turnover of 483.7 million euros, which represented a decrease of 6.9 percent from 2002 turnover. Picanol NV's contribution to this total was 364.8 million euros or 75.4 percent. Consolidated operating costs dropped 33.3 percent compared to 2002, to 23.2 million euros.

Picanol Group attributes the turnover decline to price pressures from Asian markets and the impact of a strong euro.

Moving forward, Picanol Group will explore the potential in emerging markets and niche segments, investing 6 percent of its turnover in research and development activities. The company also has defined five priorities to help ensure its continued competitiveness: customer success; customer care; cost leadership; China masterplan; and technology and innovation.

May 2004